A dish has to come from Goa, the smallest, coolest & most happening state of India. I don't have to give an introduction of Goa as the whole world knows about it. It is the tourists HOT SPOT. So let me just move on to its FOOD. The long period of Portuguese rule has left a major influence on the original style of Goan cooking & this resulted in an exotic variation of tasty and spicy cuisine. I still remember my Goan trip during college days. Enjoying in Baga Beach with friends, relishing some amazing prawn curry and next day morning, had a cup of coffee to remove the hangover of the Cashew Fenny. (Well, That I just added up....I just had two sips and I puked). :)
"Prawn Balchao" is a favourite Goan dish which can be preserved for a couple of days. In fact, its tangy taste is at its best after a day or so. It can be stored as a pickle for longer, if preservatives are added. But in my house, there's no need to add preservatives as it gets over the moment I make it. Tears fall of from my eyes (its that hot) when I relish it & I wait for that moment to happen. Well we actually have this as a side dish rather than as a pickle. People who can handle HOT STUFF (no pun intended), do surely try this one. Its a PERFECTO!! Others, avoid it or else "u will be in a pickle"!! Ha!
- 500gm prawns (small or large)
- 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
- 8 cardamoms
- 2 sticks cinnamon (1 inch each)
- 10 cloves
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 10-12 curry leaves
- 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1/2 cup oil
- 1/2 cup malt vinegar
- 1 big onion (finely chopped)
- 2 big tomatoes (finely chopped)
- 6-7 whole dry red chillies
- 2 tsp sugar
- Shell, devein, wash and pat dry prawns. I use the frozen peeled deveined prawns, making work easier. Thaw the frozen pawns well and remove all water from it.
- Blend the peppercorns, cardamoms, cinnamon, cloves, cumin & red chillies with the vinegar in a blender. Keep aside.
- Heat oil in a kadhai, & deep fry the prawns to a golden brown. Keep aside on a kitchen towel to remove excess oil.
- Add the onions to the same oil in which you fried the prawns. If the oil is too much, remove some. Saute the onions till golden. Add the ginger-garlic paste nd saute well till the raw smell goes.
- Add the tomatoes and the blended paste to the onions. stir for 2-3 minutes. Add the fried prawns, curry leaves & sugar and cook well till the prawns are tender. Don't overcook the prawns or it will become rubbery.
- Serve it as a pickle or as a side with rice or rotis.
PS:- IT IS AN "EXTRA HOT" DISH. HAVE IT ONLY IF YOU CAN HANDLE IT!! BUT it tastes AWESOME!! :)
- You can add more vinegar to keep the prawns preserved for few more days.